My Experience with the mobile version of Brave on Android

Martin Brinkmann
Sep 5, 2019
Brave, Internet

I don't use Google Chrome on Android; while the browser offers good compatibility and performance, its lack of support for extensions and thus content-blocking is what puts me off. I don't mind advertisement on sites provided that the ads are not intrusive or annoying; I tend to allow ads on sites that I value as I don't want these sites to go away because of a lack of funding.

One browser that I decided to take a look at on my Pixel 3a device was the Android version of Brave. You can check out our first look at Brave on Windows to get an overview of the desktop version.

Brave is a controversial browser; there is one side that likes Brave's attempt at solving the current advertisement, privacy, and monetization crisis on the Internet. Criticism centers around Brave's ad replacement plans and it is leveled at the browser not only from Internet publications that rely on advertising revenue but also users who believe that they trade the classic advertising model for just another.

I'm a light user when it comes to mobiles and mobile browsing. I use mobile browsers for the occasional lookup and search, but that is about it.

Brave on Android

brave browser android first look

Brave can be downloaded from Google Play. The browser has a 4.3 out of 5 rating on Google Play based on about 112k ratings. For comparison, Firefox Mobile has a rating of 4.4 based on 3.27 million votes, Opera a rating of 4.6 based on 2.91 million votes, and Chrome a rating of 4.3 based on 16.36 million votes. The other browsers have been around for longer.

The browser is based on Chromium which means that it uses the same core as Google Chrome. Web compatibility support and performance is excellent because of that.

Brave for Android comes with an integrated advertisement blocker that works similarly to the implementation in Brave for the desktop. The Shields feature is enabled by default and it blocks ads, tracking, and third-party cookies by default on all sites that you visit. You can increase the protection further by enabling script blocking and fingerprint protection.

The ad-blocking works fine on most sites; you may notice that some ads are still displayed but these are usually not of the annoying kind. You could enable script blocking on sites that still display advertisement as this should take care of these ad units as well but it may impact site functionality as well. The script blocking functionality does not provide options to allow or block specific scripts.

Protections can be enabled or disabled globally, and for individual sites. You find those options and others under Privacy in the settings. I have changed some options in Brave.

I changed the default search engine of the browser. It was set to Qwant which never really worked that well for my German queries. I switched to Startpage which is my default search engine on the desktop. Brave picks up search engines as you visit sites so that it should not be a problem selecting another search engine. You may set different search engines for standard and private tabs in the Settings.

brave browser

A Welcome Tour includes options to pick a search engine from the default selection of search providers.

The browser remembers passwords, payment methods, and addresses by default; all of these options can be turned off. Note that you cannot install extensions in Brave for Android; the installation of password managers is not supported because of that.

Brave displays a bottom toolbar by default and an URLbar at the top. You can disable the bottom toolbar to move its elements to the top, and switch between the default light and dark themes either automatically or pick one manually.

Brave's settings include a couple of surprises that may be overlooked. The browser has an option to enable background video playback, manage notifications for the Browser and visited sites, enable syncing between other Brave versions, and change the scaling of text to force larger or smaller text sizes on all sites.

HTTPS Everywhere is integrated in Brave for Android. The default new tab page lists the number of HTTPS upgrades, ads and trackers that the browser blocked, and the estimated time it saved you.

Brave Rewards

Brave Rewards is integrated in the browser. It is an optional feature that you don't need to enable. Basically, what it allows you to do is earn tokens by viewing ads that Brave provides.

These ads are based on interests inferred from browsing behavior that never leaves the browser according to Brave. You earn BAT currency and may spend it currently using the auto-contribute feature or tips feature.

Later on, you will be able to turn the virtual currency into money if you want, but for now, you may support sites that you like or tip people directly.

My Experience

The blocking of ads sets Brave apart from Google Chrome. Blocking means that pages load faster, that privacy is better, and that you will save battery in the process as well. Brave is not the only browser on Android that supports ad-blocking though.

Opera supports it too, and Firefox users may install extensions to block ads on mobile. In fact, Firefox is one of the few browsers that supports extensions on mobile right now. Whether that is going to change when the switch to the new Firefox for Mobile is made remains to be seen.

Browsing works really well on Brave for Android and while I wish that the browser would offer more granular controls for its content blocking and script blocking functionality, it is probably not a feature that is suitable for the masses.

All in all, I have to say that I like Brave a lot better than Google Chrome on Android. It has all the advantages but fewer disadvantages than Chrome.

Now you: which mobile browser do you use and why?

My Experience with the mobile version of Brave on Android
Article Name
My Experience with the mobile version of Brave on Android
How good is the Brave browser on Android? Here is my first-hand report on using Brave on Android for an extended period of time.
Ghacks Technology News

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  1. ilev said on August 4, 2012 at 7:53 pm

    Doesn’t Windows 8 know that www. or http:// are passe ?

    1. Martin Brinkmann said on August 4, 2012 at 7:57 pm

      Well it is a bit difficulty to distinguish between domains and files for instance.

    2. Leonidas Burton said on September 4, 2023 at 4:51 am

      I know a service made by google that is similar to Google bookmarks.

  2. VioletMoon said on August 16, 2023 at 5:26 pm

    @Ashwin–Thankful you delighted my comment; who knows how many “gamers” would have disagreed!

  3. Karl said on August 17, 2023 at 10:36 pm


    The comments section under this very article (3 comments) is identical to the comments section found under the following article:

    Not sure what the issue is, but have seen this issue under some other articles recently but did not report it back then.

  4. Anonymous said on August 25, 2023 at 11:44 am

    Omg a badge!!!
    Some tangible reward lmao.

    It sucks that redditors are going to love the fuck out of it too.

  5. Scroogled said on August 25, 2023 at 10:57 pm

    With the cloud, there is no such thing as unlimited storage or privacy. Stop relying on these tech scums. Purchase your own hardware and develop your own solutions.

    1. lollmaoeven said on August 27, 2023 at 6:24 am

      This is a certified reddit cringe moment. Hilarious how the article’s author tries to dress it up like it’s anything more than a png for doing the reddit corporation’s moderation work for free (or for bribes from companies and political groups)

  6. El Duderino said on August 25, 2023 at 11:14 pm

    Almost al unlmited services have a real limit.

    And this comment is written on the dropbox article from August 25, 2023.

  7. John G. said on August 26, 2023 at 1:29 am

    First comment > @ilev said on August 4, 2012 at 7:53 pm

    For the God’s sake, fix the comments soon please! :[

  8. Kalmly said on August 26, 2023 at 4:42 pm

    Yes. Please. Fix the comments.

  9. Kim Schmidt said on September 3, 2023 at 3:42 pm

    With Google Chrome, it’s only been 1,500 for some time now.

    Anyone who wants to force me in such a way into buying something that I can get elsewhere for free will certainly never see a single dime from my side. I don’t even know how stupid their marketing department is to impose these limits on users instead of offering a valuable product to the paying faction. But they don’t. Even if you pay, you get something that is also available for free elsewhere.

    The algorithm has also become less and less savvy in terms of e.g. English/German translations. It used to be that the bot could sort of sense what you were trying to say and put it into different colloquialisms, which was even fun because it was like, “I know what you’re trying to say here, how about…” Now it’s in parts too stupid to translate the simplest sentences correctly, and the suggestions it makes are at times as moronic as those made by Google Translations.

    If this is a deep-learning AI that learns from users’ translations and the phrases they choose most often – which, by the way, is a valuable, moneys worthwhile contribution of every free user to this project: They invest their time and texts, thereby providing the necessary data for the AI to do the thing as nicely as they brag about it in the first place – alas, the more unprofessional users discovered the translator, the worse the language of this deep-learning bot has become, the greater the aggregate of linguistically illiterate users has become, and the worse the language of this deep-learning bot has become, as it now learns the drivel of every Tom, Dick and Harry out there, which is why I now get their Mickey Mouse language as suggestions: the inane language of people who can barely spell the alphabet, it seems.

    And as a thank you for our time and effort in helping them and their AI learn, they’ve lowered the limit from what was once 5,000 to now 1,500…? A big “fuck off” from here for that! Not a brass farthing from me for this attitude and behaviour, not in a hundred years.

  10. Anonymous said on September 28, 2023 at 8:19 am

    When will you put an end to the mess in the comments?

  11. RIP said on September 28, 2023 at 9:36 am

    Ghacks comments have been broken for too long. What article did you see this comment on? Reply below. If we get to 20 different articles we should all stop using the site in protest.

    I posted this on [] so please reply if you see it on a different article.

    1. RIP said on September 28, 2023 at 11:01 am

      Comment redirected me to [] which seems to be the ‘real’ article it is attached to

  12. RIP said on September 28, 2023 at 10:48 am

    Comment redirected me to [] which seems to be the ‘real’ article it is attached to

  13. Mystique said on September 28, 2023 at 12:13 pm

    Article Title: Reddit enforces user activity tracking on site to push advertising revenue
    Article URL:

    No surprises here. This is just the beginning really. I cannot see a valid reason as to why anyone would continue to use the platform anymore when there are enough alternatives fill that void.

  14. justputthispostanywhere said on September 29, 2023 at 3:59 am

    I’m not sure if there is a point in commenting given that comments seem to appear under random posts now, but I’ll try… this comment is for

    My temporary “solution”, if you can call it that, is to use a VPN (Mullvad in my case) to sign up for and access Reddit via a European connection. I’m doing that with pretty much everything now, at least until the rest of the world catches up with GDPR. I don’t think GDPR is a magical privacy solution but it’s at least a first step.

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